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Miriam Makeba – Miriam Makeba (1960)

April 19, 2019

[Album 642/1001]

In the world of bedtime children’s literature, to modify a Smiths tune, some books are better than others.

At one extreme, the excruciatingly descriptive novelizations of some popular animated films. Though their companion films are often terrific, very few of the post-film productions we’ve read would be considered ‘must-read’ selections!

At the other end of the spectrum, the exquisitely presented, Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls (1 & 2). Each volume includes 100 biographies of extraordinary women & our girls often request a few of these extraordinary stories before bed.

Among the 200 featured Rebel Girls? Miriam “Mama Africa” Makeba.

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There are 2 things that didn’t work for me when listening to Miriam Makeba’s self-titled debut.

1) There’s a duet, One More Dance, as the penultimate track. Guest artist Charles Colman laughs through the entire track. While there may be an audience somewhere laughing along with him, I found it obnoxious & a jarring misstep in the otherwise excellent running order.220px-MiriamMakebaRCAVictor1960

2) It didn’t really work in the background while marking.

The good news is, I learned that when I’m listening to Miriam Makeba, I want to be listening to Miriam Makeba.

I’m not interested in being a distracted listener & I’m even less interested in her sharing the spotlight with another distracting performer.

But I’m happy to read about her &/or listen attentively to her any day.

…..

Verbalize the Positive

Here’s to Rebel Girls like Miriam!

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From → 1960s

13 Comments
  1. I only know Pata Pata, which I think came a bit later but which is terrific.

    • In the Rebel Girls story about her, they mentioned that tune – and agreed, after looking it up, it’s a good one!

  2. A Stephen Vinyl/Book mashup review!🤘
    Well done

    • My thanks Deke – the silver lining of the Penguins being done so early in the playoffs is that my attention has shifted back to music & books!

  3. 👍for only wanting to listen to her. Don’t know if Bikini Kill is on the 1001, but that’s a great song too. As for reading to children, I read in a study that if you read a toddler about 50 stories, they would have a vocab of over 100, 000! I don’t know if that figure is true or not, but I did read in another study that if you can read to them in multiple languages, you’d make them even smarter!

  4. Laughing through the track? Certainly a strange choice.

  5. Great books, those. Fine post too.

  6. Wonderful album cover. Truly. I’m curious about this one, but I’d likely be too frustrated by the laughing to play it very often. Such a kicker given it sounds like it was headed for top marks!

    • I think he must have been going for a ‘character’ in the duet – but it ended up more like the sound of a record screeching to a halt, definitely interrupted the otherwise smooth flow of the album!

      • I guess a benefit of a digital copy would be removing that track.

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